Annie Lennox is not impressed with Beyonce, or the praise Beyonce receives as a feminist, at least. Allow the venerable electro-pop great to explain.
In an interview with GLBT site PrideSource, Lennox called out the singer’s feminist values, and not just because of Sunday’s Beyonce wardrobe malfunction.
Referring specifically to last month’s Beyonce VMA performance, she said, “I would call that ‘feminist lite.’ L-I-T-E. I’m sorry. It’s tokenistic to me.”
“I mean, I think she’s a phenomenal artist – I just love her performances – but I’d like to sit down [with her]. I think I’d like to sit down with quite a few artists.”
“I’d like to listen to them. I’d like to hear what they truly think.”
“[A lot of them take] the word hostage, using it to promote themselves, but I don’t think they necessarily represent wholeheartedly the depths of feminism. No, I don’t.”
“I think for many it’s very convenient and it looks great and it looks radical, but I have some issues with it. I have issues with it. Of course I do.”
“I think it’s a cheap shot. I think what they do with it is cheap.”
“What can I tell you? Sex always sells. And there’s nothing wrong with sex selling, but it depends on your audience. If they’re 7-year-old kids, I have issues with it.”
Regarding the polarity of the word “feminism,” Lennox said, “People’s relationship to the word has been a bit ambivalent over the last few decades.”
“According to who you speak to, they don’t sometimes quite know what to do with the word,” she says, not directly referring to Farrah Abraham etc.
“Many women still have issues with the word and almost distance themselves from it because they’re afraid it’s synonymous with hating men.”
Without mentioning Emma Watson’s #HeForShe campaign, Lennox continued on to expound on what she sees is necessary to raise the public debate.
“I think that what happened over the years, and quite rightly so, is that women had to be incredibly radical, stringent and strident about the voice of feminism.”
“They had to do that, but I think that nowadays it’s a more subtle thing. But we need men to be onboard with us. That’s my view. Some women might disagree.”
“I’m not saying I hold the key to the absolute truth, but I also feel very much that the LGBTQ movement and the women’s movement need to get together far more frequently.”
“We’re coming from the same place of human rights and civil rights.”
Do you agree with Annie’s statements, both as they pertain to Beyonce and to the topic of feminism in general? Sound off on them below in the comments!